Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Small steps...

At least they are doing something, right?

During this time of economic turmoil and record job loss, a sliver of sunlight is a day on the beach for some. I get more grateful with each passing day knowing I have a job and the ability to pay my rent each month. But I also realize that every day the number of people less fortunate than I keep piling up. So when I see the people that can make a difference taking the steps to help the ones in need, no matter how small the steps, I know there's still good and common sense in the world.

I am getting more comfortable and active with my use of Simply Easier Payments account on Twitter, and that's where I found a Wall Street Journal article posted by someone I follow. FiLife, who is in partnership with The Wall Street Journal, posted this article: "City to Allow Jobless to Pay Less on Loans".

The article is about just that, Citigroup Inc. is going to allow a certain group of their mortgage customers to pay less on their loans. Here's a quick excerpt from the article:

"Under the program, Citigroup will temporarily lower mortgage payments to an average of $500 a month for certain borrowers who have recently lost their jobs and are at least 60 days behind on their mortgage payments. Borrowers will be allowed to make the lower payments for three months. Citigroup will waive interest and penalties during this period."

Obviously there are strict guidelines as to who qualifies and terms and conditions along with the contract but doesn't it feel good to see a company, SOMEBODY, doing something to ease the burden of losing a job? Maybe it's the sentimental side of me but dang, this is pretty cool.

This so called "novel program will help just a small fraction of troubled borrowers" but chief executive of CitiMortgage Sanjiv Das "hopes it will be copied by others in the industry."

Yes, it's true, Citigroup has received billions in taxpayer funds and by no means does this clean their slate of their troubling previous years, but personally, I feel like they're at least trying.

Small steps people...small steps.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Your Album Cover

I'm sure I speak for majority of the people out there when I say "Wow, it would be so cool to be in a band!" Well, of course the truth of it all is that the majority of us will never be in a least one that's worth anything to other people's ears.

So this past weekend, as I spent my time mostly indoors due to the cold and rain, I was browsing my Facebook and noticed a note one of my friends posted. It basically is a very creative way to see what your album cover could look like if you were in a band. It's just for fun so take a break and follow these steps:


1 - Go to Wikipedia. Hit “random... Read More”
or click
The first random Wikipedia article you get is the name of your band.

2 - Go to Quotations Page and select "random quotations"
or click
The last four or five words of the very last quote on the page is the title of your first album.

3 - Go to Flickr and click on “explore the last seven days”
or click
Third picture, no matter what it is, will be your album cover.

4 - Use Photoshop or similar to put it all together.

Mine came out looking a little depressing for my taste but part of the fun is the random aspect. It's pretty entertaining for a moment, and it comes out looking like a real album cover! So practice up on "Rock Band" on your game system of choice and rest assured you already have a cover for your first hit album!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

"How Can You Do This?"

Whenever a product or service seems too good to be true a lot of questions get asked:

- "How can you guys do this?"
- "Is this legal? Why can't we just charge the extra fees ourselves?"

There are many other questions that get asked but those seem to be the most common...accept of course for "How do I sign up!?", and that of course is my favorite question of them all.

As you know Simply Easier Payments offers the best service of all, a free one! We are able to eliminate the high cost of accepting credit card payments for businesses because we work as a third party provider, very similar to the Post Office and delivery companies like UPS. As such, we are allowed to charge the credit card holder an additional Security & Delivery fee for using our secure payment service.

This is legal because once again, we are a third party provider unrelated to the actual business taking the payment. The business itself cannot charge an additional fee for credit card paying customers because of regulations and compliance issues laid out by the credit card associations.

I just wanted to cover some of the most common questions I get from inquiring businesses. Looks like a great weekend coming up, weather wise, so I hope everyone can get out there and enjoy the sun!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Letting Your Staff Enter Payments

Many times you will want your staff to enter payments from customers who come into your offices or call you on the phone.

This video shows how that is done using Simply Easier Payments online payment service.

Take Online Payments from Your Website

Here is our most recent video showing how to set your site up to take online payments using Simply Easier Payments. It includes a sample web site with a user taking a payment.

The Blog Benefit

I came across another interesting blog the other day, and as I am learning myself about blogging, this particular one was right up my road. Michael Gass has this great blog called "Fuel Lines" and the blog I want to focus on is "Top 5 Benefits of Having an Agency Blog".

It's a great read and here's a quick excerpt:

"In a recent survey of business technology marketing executives by the research firm MarketingSherpa, blogs were voted the No. 4 tool for generating sales leads. Ultimately, a blog can be highly effective and the most powerful and low-cost new business marketing tool your agency will ever use."

Something so easy to use and free is voted No. 4 tool with everything else out there?!? That's amazing. Within the blog by Michael Gass you get a quick reference of his top 5 benefits which are "Fresh Content, Generate More Traffic, Easy to Use, Inexpensive and A Great New Business Tool". Those are benefits for any business and it's no different for us at Simply Easier Payments.

If you're a beginning blogger like myself, I recommend reading as many other people's blogs as you pick up a lot of ideas and who knows what new information you may pick up that could be beneficial personally!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Recurring Billings

Many businesses charge customers a regular, recurring fee. Examples are tuition payments, club memberships, insurance payment plans - even donations or thithing.

Our Recurring Billing module allows you to set these payments up to be automatically charged. I have to tell you it is a wonderful feeling to wake up each morning and check our reports to see how much money was deposited into your account when your recurring billings were run during the night.

Here is a 4 minute and 40 second video showing you how our service works and pointing out issues you will need to consider.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Interesting Article: "Bye-Bye E-Mail?"

We all love mail, whether it's regular postal mail or the e-mail. Everyone is e-mailing each other these days and why not, it's quick, easy and most times free. A lot of business can be accomplished through e-mails too. Basically, the "e-mail" has transformed the way we communicate and we love it.

But something caught my eyes today as I was roaming the Twitter account for Simply Easier Payments. Some other user of Twitter, someone I'm "following", had a link to an article titled "Bye-Bye E-Mail". Obviously I clicked the link and it took me to the "Bye-Bye E-Mail" article.

Here's a quick excerpt from that article:

"Two factors are dramatically changing the e-mail landscape: the recession and social media. Independently, these elements of change wouldn't cause a shake up to the e-mail industry. Together, however, they can have quite an impact."

It's a pretty good read, I recommend taking the time. The thing that's so interesting to me is the social media aspect of it since I've been spending a good bit of time learning my way around integrating various social medias with Simply Easier Payments. In fact I've given you our Twitter account above (follow us!) and you can even find us on Facebook, just look for S Easier Payments and friend us, we would love to have that connection with you.

Obviously we all know it would take a major event for something to make e-mails obsolete, but the obvious joy and convenience of the more "direct" and "personal contact" you get through social medias definitely gives the "e-mail" a run for its money.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

It's in the (Face)book.

Facebook. Twitter. LinkedIn. YouTube. The list goes on and on...

Social networks and...your Business?

I really should start this with a confession, and I can't remember the last time I made a confession so here it is: I was a non-believer. What legitimate business would stoop so low to be associated with "social networks" where teeny-boppers, young adults and the occasional mothers gather in mass to trade stories and pictures from events and happenings? I apparently did not do my homework on the growing relationship between businesses and the countless social networks available today.

A social network is just that, a common place for friends and family to stay in contact and stay in the loop on what's going on in people's lives. For businesses, as is true for individuals, you want to stay in contact and keep your customers in the loop on what's going on now and in the coming days.

Millions of people are comfortable with these social networks and so these networks have become a great tool for all businesses to reach out to their customers on a common ground. It offers a great platform for customers to interact with each other as well as the business itself.

Simply Easier Payments has joined the social frontier. By making a Facebook profile, Simply Easier Payments has given other businesses and individuals a common place for the masses to interact and gain information, not only from us, but from each other. Check us out (search "SEP Payments" on Facebook) and browse other pages, groups and friends related with Simply Easier Payments.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Expecting Dedication

First of all, Happy New Year!

When you're in the business of working with people they expect your dedication and for you to meet their expectations. When you're working with people AND their money, well, you can count on those expectations to grow to unmeasurable proportions. As for your personal dedication to them, they expect to be treated like they're the only one on your list.

We couldn't agree more and we welcome your expectations.

Simply Easier Payments wants to exceed your expectations and we're starting off the New Year with our own goals. One of the things to keep in mind when you're in the business of working with people is the importance of interactions; and we want to increase our interactions with our customers.

We realize we won't meet everyone we do business with face to face, no matter how badly we would prefer that option, but what we can do is increase our interactions in other ways. The standard options of emails and phone calls are always there but Simply Easier Payments wants to take it to the next level. Therefore, we are increasing our interactions with our customers by offering numerous Webinars.

These Webinars will be an opportunity for us at Simply Easier Payments to demonstrate new features, offer insight into current features, and best of all it will be a great platform for discussions and ideas among colleagues. We want to offer these Webinars as often as once a week so keep an eye out for the email of course!

We look forward to meeting you this New Year and may 2009 be the best year yet!!